First Photo of Jennifer Lawrence as Katniss in ‘The Hunger Games’

Lionsgate’s big screen adaptation of the first book in Suzanne Collins’ The Hunger Games is heading to theaters next March with Jennifer Lawrence in the lead role of Katniss Everdeen. Director Gary Ross cast the 20 year old Oscar nominee (Winter’s Bone) to play the role of the 16 year heroine of the story, and fans didn’t immediately embrace his decision. Lawrence is older than Katniss and her coloring’s different, but Ross is convinced fans will be won over by her performance.

Speaking to Entertainment Weekly just days before shooting was about to begin, Lawrence recalled her first meeting with Ross. “He was asking me what the experience was like,” said Lawrence, “and I just kind of opened up and said, ‘I feel like a rag doll. I have hair and makeup people coming to my house every day and putting me in new, uncomfortable, weird dresses and expensive shoes, and I just shut down and raise my arms up for them to get the dress on, and pout my lips when they need to put the lipstick on.’ And we both started laughing because that’s exactly what it’s like for Katniss in the Capitol. She was a girl who’s all of a sudden being introduced to fame. I know what that feels like to have all this flurry around you and feel like ‘Oh, no, I don’t belong here.”

And Lawrence admitted to EW she wasn’t initially sure whether to take on the role. “I knew that as soon as I said yes, my life would change,” she says. “And I walked around an entire day thinking ‘It’s not too late, I could still go back and do indies, I haven’t said yes yet, it’s not too late.'”

But ultimately she found she just couldn’t say no. “I love this story,” said Lawrence, “and if I had said no, I would regret it every day.”

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Jennifer Lawrence The Hunger Games Photo
Jennifer Lawrence as Katniss in 'The Hunger Games' - © EW

-By Rebecca Murray

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